One of the things most of us most dread is a major home appliance that needs replacement. Not only is this an expensive task, it can also be a hassle deciding what model will work best for you and your situation. A water heaters is one of those things that you don’t really think a whole lot about until it doesn’t work anymore. Suddenly, you realize just how important hot water is to your basic daily routine of cooking, cleaning, and basic hygiene.
When something like a water heater breaks, you know you are looking at a major expense. Water heaters come in a variety of shapes and sizes and with a wide range of price tags. There are some, like tankless water heaters that, while more expensive from the outset, can actually bring you dramatic long-term savings that make them worth the extra investment.
If you are faced with the need to replace your traditional water heater, read on to learn about some of the many advantages of tankless water heaters.
The importance of going tanklessTankless water heaters are a completely different type of system than a traditional water heater. It helps to know the basics before shopping for the right heater, as it will help guide your research and purchasing decision.
We all have a basic idea of how a traditional water heater works. It is stored in your basement or utility room and is a 40+ gallon tank of water that is kept heated at all times; this means that you are wasting energy keeping water heated when you aren’t even using it. With a tankless water heater, sometimes called a point-of-service or on-demand water heater, the system is completely different.
As the name implies, there are no tanks. There is a control unit that is hooked in with your electrical or gas system that will provide hot water to a faucet when it is turned on.The water is not kept hot at all times; rather, it is heated on demand, as you need it. While the concept is simple, these systems are a little more complex than regular water-heating systems and will often require professional installation or even electrical work.
You will want to determine what type of heater is going to work best for your needs. There are three main types of tankless water heaters: portable, electric, and gas powered. The form of energy your home is run off of will determine which will be suitable for your home.
To determine how “big” of a water heater you will need, you will need to take an inventory of your home’s hot water usage and get an idea of the flow rate that these appliances require. This will help guide you choose as well.
Main advantages of tankless water heaters
There are, as you might expect, a number of benefits of using a tankless water heater, as opposed to a traditional one. First and foremost, you use a lot less energy. Briefly, these benefits include:
- Increased efficiency
- Lower utility costs
- Reduced energy consumption
- Perfect for small spaces
- Long lifespan
- Excellent warranties
Some tankless water heaters can use as much as half the energy of a traditional water heater. This helps to illustrate how the high cost ends up being offset by long-term energy savings. People who switch from traditional to tankless water heaters often notice a significant drop in their monthly utility bills. It might not seem like much, but keeping all that water hot at all times takes a lot of energy.
Tankless systems are also space saving. They do not require a large amount of floor space like a traditional water heater. Most often, a tankless heater ends up looking like some sort of advanced thermostat, rather than a bulky appliance.
Another advantage of tankless water heaters is their long lifespan. Most traditional heaters last for 5-10 years, tops. With a tankless water heater, you can expect to get as much as 20 years out of it before it will need to be replaced. Again, this helps to illustrate that while the initial cost of the system is more expensive than a traditional water heater, it really does end up being a better value.
Oftentimes, a tankless water heater will come with a far superior warranty to traditional water heaters. Many top brands offer warranties on water heaters for as long as 12 years! You are lucky to find traditional water heaters with a 5-year warranty; this is because these systems, since they are tankless, do not have as many problems. With a traditional water heater, lime, calcium, and other minerals can build up in the tank over time; this can reduce water quality as well as efficiency.
If you are in the market to replace your traditional water heater, it makes a lot of financial sense to consider going the tankless route. Tankless systems are a reliable water heating solution which offer a number of proven advantages and benefits . Tankless water heaters use up to half as much energy as a traditional water heater, and can last up to twice as long. They can also generate a continuous supply of hot water, unlike traditional systems which sometimes are unable to keep up with demand. While tankless units are generally more expensive at the outset, the savings in utility costs, along with the increased lifespan of the appliance, make it a sound financial investment that is both efficient and environmentally friendly.